Happy Tuesday, Girls!! I got a sweet e-mail from a girl last week. She (and her hubby) recently moved a long way away from family. She was asking for any suggestions on getting plugged in to a new community. (I think she'd read that Tab and I are from Missouri/Arkansas, but we're clearly doing our best to make Texas home for us and our family.) Her e-mail really got me thinking!! I can look back and give a couple GREAT ideas for things we did that worked well! And...I have a couple things we did that did NOT work!
So...my Tuesday's Top Three is all about how to make a new city "home"...
#1 Get involved in a group
For Tab and us, that was a church group. We were HORRIBLE at this when we first got married. We lived in Arlington, TX and knew we wouldn't be there for long. Again, I'll say it. We were horrible at this for the first 8 months. I had to finish my student teaching and could only do it in Arlington. (Arlington was WAY too big city for us! ha!) That's the reason we were there. We knew as soon as I was finished we wanted to move. Once we moved to McKinney, we instantly started trying churches out and found a BFG (Sunday School class) that we loved. The couples in there were ALL our age and everyone was in the same stage of life. So much fun!
Maybe you need to find a church group too! Or maybe you need to join a gym or a running club? The point is find something you're interested in and be a part of a group!
(Okay...that picture! I searched on FB for pictures that were from WAY back when. Tab is not on FB and therefore he is in NO pictures!! This is the only one I could find from our days in Arlington. Tab and I traveled back to Jonesboro, AR, for a football game.)
These were some of the girls in our BFG. They were JUST what I needed during that time! LOVE these girls!! Whitney (on the left) had seriously just had a baby like three days before this picture! I'm not even kidding! Three days after having a baby...I was curled up in bed.
#2 Stay in Town
Our first year of marriage, Tab and I did a lot of traveling. We went to visit my family. We went to visit his family. We went to visit college friends. We went all over. Now...don't get me wrong. You should totally travel and have fun. BUT...it was hard for us to get involved with a church and a group when we were gone all the time. We decided one day that this was our new home and we needed to be here the majority of our time. I think newly married couples think if they have an extra day or two off they should go visit family. Maybe you should! But...you might need to stay in town and hang out with new friends.
#3 Take the Initiative
I get it. You're new and you feel awkward (and nervous) about inviting a couple or a new friend to do something. You have to get over it. You guys (if it's a couple thing) or you (if just girls) have to get over that nervous feeling and YOU do the inviting. You take the initiative and have a new couple over for dinner. You take the initiative and invite a new girlfriend to go shopping. Sometimes being new we tend to wait for an invitation and that shouldn't be the case. You do the inviting!!
My kiddos were born and instantly blessed with some GREAT friends!!
#4 It takes TIME
Now I can say with 100% certainty that I have some of the best girlfriends EVER!! But it took time. Don't be discouraged. In order to be super comfortable with friends, you have to REALLY know them and that simply takes time. It also takes everyone being REAL.
Bowen and I posing with the girls :) haha!! Get it?
Okay...hope this helps someone!! Like I said, Tab and I did some things VERY well, but it took us a while to realize there were some things we needed to change. Good luck to all of you in a new place!! Here's to meeting new GREAT friends!!